Archive for the ‘cucumber’ Category

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persian chopped salad

April 15, 2019

Shirazi salad, also known as Persian chopped salad, is an amazing bright, fresh, and summery vegan treat. It doesn’t get much healthier than this raw crunchy salad.

The only necessary ingredients here are a veggie or two, lemon or lime juice, and something herby. It’s too early in the season here for fresh garden herbs, but dry mint was great in this!

Chop any combination of the following:
raw fresh cucumbers
raw fresh tomatoes
raw onion
raw garlic
fresh hot chili pepper
fresh herbs like mint, parsley, or cilantro

Add chickpeas if you like. (I do!)

Dress with lemon or lime juice, and any combination of salt and pepper, dry or fresh mint, dry or fresh dill, and a splash of extra virgin olive oil.

(If you’re leaving out the fresh herbs, make sure to add extra citrus, and some dried herbs like dill-and-garlic seasoning or capitol hill blend!

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recipe adapted from a variety of sources, including Persian mama and Cleveland clinic.

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Similar to a fattoush or “Israeli salad” – this infinitely adaptable salad goes with everything. I highly recommend the chickpeas. Chickpeas add an interesting texture, and lots of protein and fiber!

If you like spicy, Sichuan cucumber salad is your best bet. But what if you want something clean and fresh, not doused in spicy oil? The dry mint in this recipe makes it super refreshing.

This is basically a textbook example of a “detox meal” – something that makes you feel alive again after a winter of eating junk food like super-greasy crispy fried tofu. Easy to make low-sodium, great for a potluck, and a great way to use local veggies from your backyard garden or your farmers’ market.

It doesn’t get much healthier than this!

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sichuan cucumber salad

April 9, 2019

perfect fresh, sour, crunchy foil to anything heavy. equally amazing served as a side with a rich pork meal (like dandanmian) – a crunchy topper for your salad – or just a mid-day snack.

smash or slice cucumbers into your favorite shape and size

top with any combination of the following:

– splash of sesame oil and/or hot chili oil (make your own with dry chilis and canola/veg oil, or use leftover dandanmian oil – easy substitution would be canola oil with a pinch of cayenne or hot sauce)
– splash of tamari or soy sauce
– pinch of sugar
– pinch of salt
– toasted Sichuan peppercorns
– splash of black vinegar (if you don’t have chinkiang vinegar, rice wine vinegar or apple cider will do)

if you want to get wild, add:
– pinch of toasted sesame seeds
– pinch of minced ginger and/or garlic

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adapted by friedsig from lots of sources, especially richard hsiao’s pickled cukes, but also China Sichuan food, appetite for China, and omnivore’s kitchen

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absolutely fantastic. perfect summery recipe. dare you not to eat the whole thing! it’s really more of a quick pickle than a salad, so let flavors absorb for at least an hour before eating (if you can resist the urge to eat it all immediately)

without question my best cucumber salad recipe besides fattoush and a plain-yogurt-and-dill thing i make in high summer. try this!!!

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charred onion and cucumber salad (vegan!)

January 6, 2019

In the middle of the winter, it’s easy to get tired of your favorite soups and heavy, stewed dishes. After a few weeks of holiday eating, I was craving something light and fresh. This recipe is from bon appetit.

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1 medium English hothouse cucumber, sliced into rounds

1 small to medium onion

1 Fresno chile, thinly sliced into rings, seeded if desired

4 tablespoons red wine vinegar, divided

4 tablespoons olive oil, divided, plus more for serving

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

¼ teaspoon dried oregano

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GRILL DIRECTIONS:

Prepare grill for medium-high heat. Combine chile and 2 Tbsp. vinegar in a small bowl; set aside.

Place onions on a rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with 2 Tbsp. oil; season with salt and pepper. Turn to coat. Grill onions directly on grate until lightly charred and softened, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a large bowl and toss with remaining 2 Tbsp. vinegar; let cool.

Coarsely chop ½ cup grilled onion and return to bowl. Add chile and soaking liquid, cucumber, dried oregano, and 2 Tbsp. oil and toss to combine; season with salt and pepper. Serve drizzled with more oil.

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NO GRILL DIRECTIONS:

Heat a cast-iron to be ripping hot on the stovetop, probably at least medium-high heat. Combine chile, vinegar, cucumber, oregano, and oil. Set aside.

Heat onions on cast iron until charred. Remove from pan and transfer to separate bowl with vinegar. Let soak five minutes, then combine everything.

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The seasoning of just red wine vinegar and oregano makes it taste exactly like an East coast style sub sandwich/hoagie. I found it extremely nostalgic. This was great brought along to lunch and used to top salads, sandwiches, and grains. The flavor is simple and uncomplicated. Next time, I will experiment with charred onions and cucumbers by adding some other spices, so it doesn’t taste like a sandwich. Mark suggested adding some toasted cumin. I think I will try something even more balanced and complex, like dukkah, or numbing xi’an spice. Or maybe it’s better to go simple, with some fresh dill and other herbs, and a pinch of sugar to bring out the caramelization of the onions. Whatever you do, charring the onions does add something interesting, so experiment and let me know what you think!

(If you live on the East coast, this red-wine-vinegar-and-oregano combo might not be all that exciting, so can I recommend slicing cucumbers and adding some garlicky Syrian yogurt and tahini sauce? It’s one of my favorite ways to eat a cucumber.)

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recipe adapted from bon appetit by friedsig

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five-minute healthy cucumber, lime, and mint salad

April 24, 2016

this is my new favorite cucumber salad. it comes together in five minutes and makes a perfect quick lunch or side.

cut up one giant cucumber or several smaller cucumbers

– put the pieces in a bowl and coat them with olive oil, about a tablespoon.
– use an equivalent amount of rice wine vinegar. mix well.
– add the juice of half a lime, salt and pepper, tons of fresh mint minced up, and minced onions in your favorite style. (grill, roast, sear, or soak in saltwater if you hate raw onions.)
– if you like it hot, add a little minced fresh serrano, jalapeno, or whatever you have in the house.

mix it up:

– (opt.) add a few roasted peanuts, crunched-up, for texture and flavor!
– (opt.) you can also add a pinch of sugar, honey, or your favorite sweetener if you like it sweeter.
– (opt.) if you have homemade la jiao jiang, that’s always great in any cold salad.
– (opt.) add 2 drops of fish sauce if it feels like it’s missing something.
– (opt.) add whatever fresh herbs you have in the house, a few minced or chopped salad greens, a few chunks of tomato, or a few sliced radishes.

make it at least 15 minutes before you plan to eat it.

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recipe by friedsig

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abdoogh khiar (5-minute cold cucumber yogurt soup)

January 1, 2015

Looking for a very healthy and very fast snack to add to a healthy meal? Maybe you have the heat cranked up and you’re pretending it’s summer. Maybe you just have something summery to celebrate. Maybe you worked up a sweat shoveling snow, and you want to cool off. Or maybe you need something cold and refreshing to enjoy with a spicy, hearty stew.

This Persian cold soup, from aashpazi, looks like a delicious variation of an Indian raita!

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Just dice 2 cucumbers into 1/2 cup shredded walnuts, a ton of fresh herbs (they recommend tarragon, mint, basil, and chives, but whatever you have in the house will be good,) and 1/4 c raisins. Stir in 2 cups of yogurt and 6-8 ice cubes, with water if you prefer. Season with salt and pepper. Top with dried mint and rose leaves. (or not.)

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adapted from aashpazi… check out the photos of the rose petals on top!